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Gloucestershire Business News

Cotswold supermarket is proving where your food comes from

New technology proving where your food comes from has become a firm favourite with customers of a Cotswolds supermarket.

The Midcounties Cooperative in Bourton-on-the-Water kicked-off a scheme for its 'Best of our Counties' range last week, with all suppliers having to prove where they source their ingredients.

The groundbreaking initiative saw the Cooperative team up with Happerley, an organisation committed to making food production transparent.

And for the first day invited guests were given a special tour to show the providence of their food - starting at the Cotswold Farm Park.

Founder of Happerley, Matthew Rymer, CEO of Midcounties Co-operative, Phil Ponsonby, and TV presenter and farmer, Adam Henson

Adam Henson, the presenter of the BBC's Countryfile and a supporter of the initiative, the guests were shown how the Happerley technology would prove where the food was sourced.

Happerley founder Matthew Rymer and Phil Ponsonby, CEO of Midcounties Cooperative, then demonstrated how a special mobile phone app could view a QR code at the point of sale.

As a food producer and farmer, Henson said that it is important for shoppers to know exactly where - and who - had produced their food.

"Matthew approached me about 14 months ago and explained the concept of looking at traceability and transparency in the food supply chain," he said.

"As a farmer, I feel proud and passionate about what we produce.

"I'd love the consumer to understand where our food has come from and then be able to have a level playing field when it comes to marketing it. It's a great initiative and I'm right behind it."

Happerley founder Rymer added: "We've developed the QR technology to be accessible to any food and drink supplier. It's a no-brainer in terms of the benefits.

"The Happerley mark shows the supplier has no need to hide its ingredients and that there's a value to its ingredients that it is keen to reflect.

"Ultimately, we want this to be a sign of reassurance, so the consumer can explore the journey of their ingredients."

Phil Ponsonby of the Midcounties Cooperative added: Transparency in the UK food supply chain is something that consumers are increasingly becoming more aware of.

"The Happerley app will allow our customers to find out exactly where their food has come from and the journey it's been on. We're proud we can prove traceability in our locally sourced products."

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